Archive for Thoughts

Response to This is why Business hates IT

Response to This is why Business hates IT Recently I had the pleasure, well in this situation if pleasure meant gut wrenching soul crushing, absolutely dumb stuck horror of a read, Why Business hates IT

The user requested a site overhaul and attached a number of pictures aka mock ups and suggested that SharePoint Designer was sufficient to update the site. The site is hosted on a SharePoint 2010 environment and serves as a SharePoint Internet facing website.

I have passed many exams and have a hand full of certifications that have been awarded to me from a governing body that state I am highly competent in the Microsoft, notably in the SharePoint space. I run my own company that provides SharePoint consulting, which I personally provide. On a daily basis I take queries and requests from business users and provide them with a robust, stable and workable solution. I have done this for more than 5 years and not looking to slow down any time soon. Hence the reason why I thought my input would be worthwhile.

I believe when the business request a solution, they are doing just that, requesting something to be completed, the discussion should then move to IT because they will no longer understand what is actually required to complete the request otherwise they would of done it themselves. If the business user continues to be involved in the IT discussion they will become confused, angry, and in this situation air their dirty laundry to the world in order to gather a force of angry confused business users against IT.

So when I read something by a business user that starts off stating that they hate me because IT did not respond to their vague request adequately because of their own lack of insight as to how the product actually works is very upsetting.

Usually I would just laugh this off, well actually I wouldn’t have, I would of thought shame Business is really a brat and backed IT silently, but I was actually a part of the conversation (I was the one who suggested a DEV environment to the wrong individual as I was only added halfway through the discussion, cause we don’t DEV on LIVE where I come from) that was posted. It was both a shock and an embarrassment to realise how badly behaved and ill-tempered some people can be, what ever happened to diffusing the situation and reiterating a point to get it back on track. A compromise would be great, how about allowing IT to come up with a plan, which was suggested, and let them run with it to improve the idea of Business for a better end result. Instead Business decided that one lined responses to IT queries would suffice.

Business user: “Ok never mind.”


Business User: “You people are unbelievable……………………………………………. Epic fail!”

Not to mention that the original request wasn’t simply a contacts page it was actually the entire site. Which was meant to be completed with just hotspots? Why bother using SharePoint if you are going to put pictures and hotspots together. Use Word press and get on with it.

I have am involved on a daily occurrence with business and 9 times out of 10 a pleasant experience, because IT will take the ideas from business, work on them and present it back to them without involving them in the ‘magic’ that goes behind the solution. Business doesn’t care about that goodness we IT care about, they are simply all about the end product. They should however just stop and think every now and again, if IT wasn’t here where would I be? A field picking cotton, a bathroom unclogging a blocked toilet or a human traffic deterrent waving a bright yellow flag and wearing a chevron waist coat? That’s right everything revolves around IT, and don’t ever forget that, treat us well and you will in return be lavished with fast internet connectivity, fancy websites and untold media riches, treat us badly and you will be shunned to unexpected errors, lack of permissions and blue screens of death.

Post to Twitter uses threats to take down blog post

As you can see in the comments of my previous blog “ is rigged” TopSharePoint is now trying to blackmail me in order for me to remove the article. What really annoys me about this situation is I have clearly explained above how everything went down and I have nothing to hide. Yes we used TOR sites but it was only because we knew that this practise was already been put in place by the TopSharePoint team to put whoever they deemed fit as site of the month.

Now I get bombarded with messages from Top SharePoint to remove the article or they will publish the Log files of what we all know will only include a one sided view of what happened. TopSharePoint you are already dabbling in the dark side so no matter what you do now, how can we the public believe that what you are saying is true?

TopSharePoint here is something you should try, add a Facebook like button to each site instead, that way all votes will be accounted for. I don’t see you actually carrying this out, simply because then you won’t be able to guarantee the highest bidder the site of the month will you?

As for your requests to take down this article, how about no … and how about you stop trying to blackmail people? I have been afforded the right to Liberty, which if you have forgotten is the souls right to breathe. I will not be pushed around and be told what to do, not by you or by any of your threats.

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The month of February 2012 GTconsult appeared on the Top SharePoint website boasting Best site of the month!

They had a fantastic new approach to a typical SharePoint UI creating a fresh look using the inspiration from Microsoft Windows 8 Metro UI.  Their avg rating was just under 5 stars and going strong.

However after a few days the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation site was on top.  Visit their site here.  So the GTconsult team did a huge drive to get their site back on top, and by the end of the day and tapping every possible resource they had taken back the lead.  I did notice however our ratings where around three and half stars at the beginning of the day which meant we had to have gotten a few 1 star votes, I put it down to jealousy and moved on …

The next day the Canadian Breast Cancer site once again was beating the GTconsult website and once again our average vote had diminished to almost 3.  I see what game we are playing now, not only vote for one’s site but down vote other sites which gives it a lower average.  That’s not really very scrupulous but since there are no rules other than the fact that you can only vote one time from your computer then I guess it’s allowed.

I tried an experiment and got a bunch of friends to vote up other contenders for Site of the Month, and we managed to get Fiat on top with an avg just over 4, and low and behold the site was knocked down the next day and had an avg of under 4.

Perplexed as to how this could be happening as it is only possible to vote once for each site I chatted to a buddy of mine, who is the spawn of Neo and Trinity.  He managed to work out a very easy method to bypass the voting system on TopSharePoint, which he then explained to me was either already being used or the site was being manipulated on the backend in order for results to favour whoever they deemed fit.

I asked him to prove it, so he moved every single site as well as GTconsult site to the top of the charts sending the Canadian Brest Cancer Foundation site to the very bottom of the list … I apologise for that but I was fairly confident it was only going to be for a few moments.

The next day I noticed GTconsult was not only no longer on top but had been removed from the site all together! And the Canadian Breast Cancer site is back on top, even though the previous day at this time it had an average of 3.4 with 289 votes compared to the current standing of 4.06 with 320 votes

Let’s do the math shall we.  Over 29 days required 11 votes a day all of which had to be 4 stars and every now and again a 5 star.  The next best site with that type of average is with 419 votes at 4.03 average, the difference being was uploaded in December 2009.  What’s the math?  Well it’s not 11 votes a day, it is around 1 vote every second day ….

I really don’t want to be labelled as a hater of Canada or the Breast Cancer foundation I think it’s a fantastic organisation and it really has a great presence on social media as well as the internet.  Please visit the site here and donate here

My issue is that TopSharePoint is a site that should showcase the best SharePoint site regardless of what the site is actually representing, and if the public is not in control of the outcome don’t allow them to vote. Simply state that TopSharePoint will decide which site is best, instead of lulling the site visitors into a false sense of security merely to entertain them with a vote just to throw it in the trash because the victor has already been decided.

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Publishing Anonymous InfoPath form for SharePoint 2010 Internet Sites

We were working on our new SharePoint 2010 Internet site today here at G&T and had some issues without contact form not allowing anonymous users to submit contact us forms.
We had done everything right, or so we thought. After getting the below errors and a lot of head scratching and googling we managed to get everything resolved.

Unknown SPRequest error occurred. More information: 0x80070005
The XSN is null and its not a cross server issue. Most likely a permission issue
  1. Allow Anonymous Access via Central Administration
    Application Management > Manage Web Applications > Authentication Providers > Enable anonymous access
  2. Disable Viewformpageslockdown
    Open SharePoint 2010 Management Shell

    get-spfeature -site URL
    $viewformlockdown = get-spfeature viewformpageslockdown
    disable-spfeature $viewformlockdown -URL
  3. Enable Anonymous access via the Site Collection
    Goto http://URL/_layouts/user.aspx
    Anonymous Access > Entire Web site
  4. Enable Add Items to List for Anonymous users

Big thanks to Russ Maxwell for his post on the above PowerShell ViewFormLockDown solution

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SharePoint Saturday Cape Town 2011

I really enjoyed this event and it was such an honour to be part of the SharePoint Saturday Cape Town 2011 CREW!  I’m going to make my Oscar speech now and thank Alistair Pugin for organising the event and asking me to help out, mate if it wasn’t for you none of this would of happened.  Naz Parker from Sanlam did an outstanding job with the venue, his track and all the background items that went on.  To my wife Annelie Geldenhuys for doing such a great job with suppliers and organising such great swag, thank you again my love.  Ben Curry, Zlatin Dzinic and Michael Noel, we owe you all big time for making the long haul all the way from US to present.  Veronique Palmer, Christopher Simusokwe, Vanessa Raath, Francious Pienaar for making a special appearance from Jozi.  For all the other speakers for and attendees who made it a great day, Thank you.

You can check out the video and pics created by Intervate on the day here, thanks to Mark Fletcher and Troy Gerber for organising this!

Without further a due my slide deck form my session “Unlocking the power of Claims-Based authentication in SharePoint 2010”

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Rugby World Cup 2011 SharePoint Site Template

I had an idea today on the way to work that SharePoint 2010 could be used to follow the Rugby World cup 2011. This site can be used by many different organizations hence the reason I am giving it away for free 🙂

Basically the site has all the teams and their match fixtures for users to follow the games. Whats more is users can get to vote on the outcome of each game and have on going discussions about the results.

Hopefully this will just add to your current SharePoint 2010 ROI or boost End user adoption

Check it out here

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Information Worker Cape Town August 30th 2011 roundup

What a great evening! We had a full house, and even had to steal some seats for some late comers … Marc LenFerna and Alistair Pugin have really made this event a must on the monthly SharePoint calendar, and I’m sure this has nothing to do with the great food and drinks served during the interval.
I presented on SharePoint in the cloud and added my slide deck here.

Troy Gerber gave a great presentation on SharePoint gems and has a great hidden talent as a standup act.
Thanks to everyone involved and hope to see you again next month!

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Information Worker Cape Town

I will be presenting SharePoint in the cloud at Information Worker on the 30th of August.  I will cover Public cloud, Private cloud and Hybrid cloud options at a high level to give you an idea of what will best suit your needs.


Register for Free here!

I will upload the decks after the show 🙂

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SharePoint Funnies

SharePoint Funnies

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The importance of community involvement within the SharePoint space

Yesterday on a warm breezy summers day in Cape Town, South Africa a couple blokes from different companies that compete for the same clients in the same field with the same product got together for an ice cold beer to chat about work … after work. Why?

Well despite the fact that beer was involved, one of the main reasons this astonishing phenomenon occurs is because they are passionate about what they do. The ancient Greeks did not write obituaries; instead they asked only one question of a man/woman. Did he/she have passion? Without passion one has no desire to better oneself. Passion is the driving force behind inspiration, happiness, success and motivation.

A career in the SharePoint space provides every opportunity to ensure that the passion for your career never slips away. A flourishing global community welcomes any newcomer to the scene with open ears and twittering hearts. Local based Information Worker (IW) and SharePoint Saturday (SPS) events are a great way to meet and great likeminded professionals from your area to share ideas, concerns and information. Global events such as Best Practices Conference (BPC) and Microsoft SharePoint Conference (MSC) to name a few are where the best and greatest SharePoint minds get together annually. And let’s not to forget a SharePint just to get together and shoot the breeze over a cold one.

The importance of community involvement within the SharePoint space is about creating a better understanding about a product we sell to our clients to give them a greater return on investment (ROI) which makes a happy client which makes us happy which makes our bosses happy which betters our careers and so on and so forth. The more we learn and share the better the product will grow and thus ensuring job security. I could go on and on but you get the idea.

I do believe the most important reason for community involvement with the SharePoint space is that it makes me proud to be part of an industry that takes work home with them. Not because we have to, because we want to.

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